As you may have heard, George W. Bush joined the ranks of Presidents recently. During interviews and debates, his absolute incompetence was impossible to hide.
Although one could take solace in having a President who can’t even pronounce “subliminal messages”, never mind plant them, his very election is still disturbing. It has been reported almost everywhere that he is only the second man to ever be elected President while losing the popular vote. As far as I am concerned, this is two too many elections of this kind.
As the first nation to hold elections to determine the head of state, the United States needed to make a few innovations. One of these was ostensibly labeled a “compromise” between the smaller and larger states, the Electoral College.
This could be considered an attempt to further drain power from ordinary citizens and place it in the hands of the privileged, but at the time, this would be beating a long-dead horse.
In a way, this system has been permitted to survive simply because of other factors, such as mismatched candidates. However, two candidates the people supposedly did not want to elect managed to reduce people to absurd actions. Their supporters showed more passion than the candidates themselves.
The election degraded into accusations of vote-counters eating bits of paper. Voting machines, which are almost as old as the candidates, still represent the whims of the public. These machines can be rigged in less time than it takes to use them properly. Clearly, the system of elections is more than flawed, and is begging for reform.
Trying to abolish the Electoral College is like trying to remove a splinter after someone breaks his ankle. There are more immediate concerns, which may be dealt with for once.
Campaign finance reform may be seriously addressed for a change. Already, researchers are working on a perfect voting system. Before one tries to change the system, we as a nation need to insure that our votes will be counted properly in our current system. Only then can other flaws be addressed.